Greek Life

Brunswick, ME
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Recent Alumnus

Greek Life: There is no greek life at Bowdoin College.

3 people found this useful Report
College Freshman

Greek Life: We here at Bowdoin do not have Greek life.

1 person found this useful Report
College Junior

Greek Life: We don't have any Greek Life. Instead we have the College House system, which is similar to a Frat/Sorority system. Houses are generally populated by Sophomores and are co-ed.

1 person found this useful Report
College Freshman

Greek Life: Frats and Sororities? We Have College Houses Instead. Greek life was taken away from Bowdoin several years ago and was replaced by the college house system. The college house system is open for anyone to join. Every week or so, each college house will organize campus-wide parties with various themes. There are times when college house parties get repetitive, but for the most part, they're pretty fun.

4 people found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Greek Life: Harry Potter Arrives in America – We have a house system instead of a Greek system, sort of like Harry Potter. You are a member of a house the moment you arrive on campus and can be as involved as you like. Personally, I felt like my house was a family waiting for me when I got here. They helped me with both my academic and social life. I decided at the end of my freshman year to apply to live in the house itself. The process involves references, short essays, and interviews. There is absolutely no hazing since you are already a member of the house. I love living in the house. We plan parties, movies viewings, community service, and lots of other events for both our affiliates and the campus. The houses are central to the social scene at Bowdoin.

5 people found this useful Report

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 278th
    Best Greek Housing
  • 320th
    Best Greek/Non-Greek Relations
  • 1190th
    Where Greek Life Rules

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Danica Loucks
Hamilton, Mont.
Probably Sociology and German
View all previous student authors

The Greek system hasn’t existed at Bowdoin in any form since 2000. Greek Row was replaced by College social houses—upperclass students apply to live in one of eight social houses, and each house is affiliated with a first-year dorm to assist the proctors in transitioning first-years to the social life on campus. The houses used to be fraternity houses before Bowdoin believed the Greek system hindered Admissions from attracting the best student body possible. Unlike the Greek system, the social house system is controlled by the Residential Life Office, which plays a role in who lives in each house. However, each house is given a budget to plan its own programming for its residents, their affiliated first-years, and the community.

Less than 20 percent of the student body participates in this housing option. About 30 students live in each house in singles, doubles, or triples. Each house offers laundry facilities, common areas, and social areas, and some include elevators and prime parking spaces. Social house parties tend to attract first-years and sophomores, but parties like Halloween at MacMillan, Graffiti at Baxter, and the ’80s Party at Ladd do attract some upperclassmen. If you're looking for free beer, social house parties will have it. These parties are most often described as "hot, sweaty, and gross," but they are still attended.

Facts & Statistics

Undergrad Men in Fraternities
Undergrad Women in Sororities
Number of Fraternities
Number of Sororities
Did You Know?
Howell House is the chem-free social house and provides fun activities that don't involve getting hammered, like apple picking, gingerbread house making, Rock Band tournaments, and movie nights. This is a great social outlet for students not interested in partying, but Howell's campus-wide events usually have very low attendance.

Student Polls

What is Greek life's role in the campus social scene?    Based on 13 responses

  • 100% We don't have Greek life.
  • 0% Greek life is pretty low-key and has little effect on the social scene.
  • 0% Greek life is huge-you're no one if you're not Greek.
  • 0% Greek life is average, and no one will treat you differently if you don't join.
  • 0% Greek life is pretty big. You don't have to join to enjoy the parties, but you might want to consider it.

What kind of housing is available for Greek students?    Based on 14 responses

  • 0% Greek students live in run-down chapter houses.
  • 93% No special housing is available.
  • 0% Greek students live in dedicated wings in the dorms.
  • 7% Greek students live in opulent chapter houses.

What is the general attitude of non-Greeks toward Greeks?    Based on 8 responses

  • 0% Non-Greeks see Greeks as snobby and cliquey.
  • 0% Non-Greeks think Greeks are only good for the parties they throw.
  • 75% Most non-Greeks are indifferent about Greeks.
  • 25% Most non-Greeks think Greeks do great things for the community.

How difficult is it to get into a fraternity or sorority?    Based on 6 responses

  • 17% Very difficult.
  • 17% Somewhat difficult.
  • 17% Somewhat easy.
  • 50% Very easy.
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